CHRIS Wood is targeting Hampshire’s first T20 match of the season as his comeback from a major knee operation.
The Hampshire seamer is recovering from microfracture surgery following wear-and-tear damage to his left knee, so is expected to miss the first four LV County Championship matches.
But he hopes to be back in time for Hampshire’s ‘T20 Blast’ opener against Glamorgan at The Ageas Bowl on May 16.
The 23 year-old said: “I had issues with my left knee last June and a couple of injections got me through till it flared back up with two games to go.
“We investigated it further and it was a bit of a concern but the surgeon didn’t want to operate unless he had to so we gave it the best chance to heal normally with rehab.
“By December it was still painful so the surgeon had another look and did it a couple of days before Christmas.”
Andrew Flintoff and Simon Jones, Wood’s former Hampshire teammate, are among cricketers to have undergone microfracture surgery, which involves small holes being made in the joint to encourage new cartilage growth.
“The last four weeks have been pain free but I just can’t put any weight on it at the moment, it takes time to get all the muscle strength back around the knee,” said Wood. “I’m on crutches for another week, then hopefully I can start walking properly again.
“If all goes well I’ll miss the first four or five weeks of the season. The aim is the first Twenty20 game if possible, but it’s all very up in the air.”
Wood admits he is not sure exactly what has caused the damage to his knee.
“It’s probably a combination of lots of things,” he said. “My action may be a part of it or it may just be wear and tear from playing too much golf and football over the years.”